By Tim Johnson
"Now we will bless this garden and ask God's presence here … We also want to bless our people, because they're the ones who carry out our mission."
Bishop Richard Pates of the Catholic Diocese of Des Moines spoke during a blessing of the Mercy Hospital Healing Garden Tuesday. The event kicked off Mercy's 125th anniversary celebration.
Ground was broken for the 6,500-square-foot garden on April 18, 2011. The $200,000 garden opened Oct. 18 between the hospital's intensive care unit and laboratory and can be seen from the Intensive Care Unit. The long-awaited refuge was the vision of Martha Binkard, the late director of operations for the ICU. It was funded entirely by private donations, including many from Mercy employees.
"It's truly a place of hope," said Marie Knedler, vice president and chief operations officer. "It's such a sacred place."
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